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Caregiving and travel patterns.
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    This study explored the impact of caregiving for older adults on mobility and travel

    patterns. Specifically, the focus was on how caregivers managed trips on behalf of

    another who receives care. Caregiving is becoming increasingly common as the

    population ages, and the number of people providing care for loved ones is expected to

    grow in the future. A 2004 survey by the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP

    estimated that there were nearly 44.4 million people who provided unpaid care for

    another adult (National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP 2004). Caregiving for others

    often requires that caregivers make adjustments in their lives, fitting caring for their

    loves ones – and trips on behalf of their loves ones – around already busy schedules.

    Caregivers are also more likely to be women than men. For many older couples where

    the husband had long been the primary driver, caregiving roles can also mean a change

    in driving roles and in travel patterns. In spite of the growth in caregiving, and the

    increases expected in the future, we know relatively little about the impact of caregiving

    on travel behavior. This project focused on the trips that caregivers of people with

    Alzheimer’s or other dementias made on behalf of those for whom they provided care,

    and how they may have adjusted their travel patterns to accommodate the additional

    needs they must satisfy. The questions in this study include the nature of the

    relationship between caregivers and those who receive care, the types of trips

    caregivers make for their loved ones, and how caregivers accommodate these trips –

    either by trip chaining, making additional trips, foregoing the trip (or having someone

    else make the trip), or having the goods or services brought in-home where possible.

    The goal of this work was to highlight some of the changes in trip and travel behavior

    we might expect as more people take on caregiving roles in their lives.

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